Thursday, 1 July 2021


Zimbabwe’s power utility Zesa is owed more than $1 billion in unpaid bills, affecting electricity distribution in the country, President Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday.

Speaking at the commissioning of 26 vehicles and 117 transformers for the power utility, Mnangagwa also blamed vandalism of power infrastructure for the deteriorating power situation in the country.

Zesa intensified load-shedding since the beginning of June and in a circular to customers, blamed technical faults at Hwange and depressed supply from South Africa for the outages. “Over 3 000 transformers have been vandalised and stolen,” Mnangagwa said.

“I have asked the Minister of Science and Technology to make sure that those who vandalise are found on the spot.”

Zesa has been blaming the unavailability of vehicles as one of the major reasons it was failing to attend to faults. Mnangagwa implored Zesa to work with the police in order to curb vandalism.

“I am certain that vandalism is being done by those who have knowledge of how to reach the wires. Either its Zesa workers or ex-workers,” he said, adding that electricity was at the centre of economic development, therefore, the commissioning of vehicles and transformers was part of the country’s strategy towards economic revival.

“If Zesa people do not generate electricity, everything stops,” he said.

“Universities need electricity, homes are moving away from firewood, primary and secondary schools need electricity, if they do not have electricity they feel they are behind. Within two or three years, Zesa should not be able to spell the word load-shedding.”

Mnangagwa said 300 000 houses around the country were yet to be connected to the national grid and implored Zesa to connect them to generate more revenue.

Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga said increasing power generation and service was a step in eradicating poverty.

“Improvement of power increases production and this has been made possible through the support from the government,” he said. Newsday


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